Police sergeant sacked for refusing drugs test
- Credit: Archant
A police sergeant who refused to provide a drugs test has been dismissed despite a “previously unblemished career”.
Sergeant Michael Suley, of Essex Police, who was based in Clacton, was found to have breached standards of professional behaviour for orders and instructions and discreditable conduct.
Essex Police Chief Constable BJ Harrington chaired a hearing yesterday in Chelmsford, which heard that Suley refused to provide a urine sample during a drugs test on November 25, 2019.
Suley cited the reasons for his refusal related to concerns that the test would return as positive because he took cannabidiol (CBD) oil and that he had recently been at risk of passive inhalation of cannabis smoke while off duty.
Refusing to provide a sample is deemed to be as serious as failing a drugs test, Essex Police said.
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Despite a previously unblemished career, Suley was dismissed without notice, the force added.
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"The requirement for officers to take drugs tests under specific circumstances is essential to assure the public officers are not taking illegal drugs.
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"It also serves as a deterrent to the small minority of officers who may be tempted.
"A refusal to take a test when lawfully required is a very serious matter and, as a result, is treated the same as if an officer failed the test.
"Where officers self-declare substance misuse related issues prior to testing there is welfare support in place to help them."